In the News
Millions at risk from starvation (Feb. 20, 2006) — As many as 11 million people are threatened with starvation across east Africa because of a combination of drought and conflict, a U.N. special investigator warned on Monday.
Jean Ziegler, U.N. special rapporteur on the right to food, said that pre-famine conditions were increasingly being reported in Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and Tanzania. Ziegler, who reports to the Geneva-based Human Rights Commission, said Tanzania and Kenya had the largest number at risk — 3.7 million and 3.5 million, respectively. In Somalia, there were 2 million at risk, with 1.75 million in Ethiopia and 150,000 in Djibouti.
The World Meteorological Organization, a U.N. agency, has warned that rain is unlikely before April.
On Feb. 15, Tanzania appealed for 100,000 metric tons of food aid for the millions suffering because of drought. The appeal came two days after the U.N. refugee agency said an average of 100 people from neighboring Burundi flee to western Tanzania every day to escape a punishing drought that has left 2.2 million people in need of food aid in the small central African country.